If you are able to get out of bed early before sunrise and the sky is clear, you can catch a view of our three closest planets, and if you include Earth that makes 4. Mercury was at the greatest elongation on September 12th (furthest from the Sun when viewed from Earth) which makes it a good time to spot without the glare of the Sun. But it happens that Mars and Venus are also on that same side of the Sun, making a chanced planetary alignment.
The sky map below [click for larger] shows the position of Mercury, Mars and Venus for the morning of the 16 to the 19 of September. Bright star Regulus and our Moon are also there to make this a worth-while event, especially on Monday the 18th.
Mars and Mercury will be closest on the 16th, while the 18th will probably be the most photogenic as the Moon will be a thin crescent in the middle of this alignment.
With the last maneuver planned for April 24th, the Messenger spacecraft will be officially out of fuel and unable to maintain proper orbit around planet Mercury. Scientists expect the spacecraft to crash onto Mercury on April 30th. Unfortunately the impact is expected on the opposite side of the planet, out of view from Earth’s observation posts.
I know for past spacecraft impacts such as those on the Moon, NASA had asked the amateur astronomy community to observe and record the impact. Out of luck and out of reach this time…
Sources: SPACE.COM / NASA